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Increasing Staff Wellbeing through Social Referents Theory

"Theory suggests that the public behaviour of highly connected and chronically salient actors in a group, called social referents, may provide influential cues for individuals' perception of collective norms.” Paluck, E. L., & Shepherd, H. (2012).

This webinar covers the basics of “social referents theory” and how Marlborough College Malaysia is using the research behind this theory to increase support and wellbeing amongst staff members. It covers their process, which involved identifying staff members that are “salient” amongst the school community and then inviting them to participate in a 4-week training course on positive psychology principles and CBT techniques.

The goal of this training was to have individuals prepared to provide informal support to staff members that may be struggling throughout the year. They called this group “Staff Peers” and have trained over 20 members so far with the intent to expand their cohort the following year. They highlight some of their early successes with this group and plans for expansion.

This webinar is presented by Magnus Cowie, Deputy Head Pastoral, Diane Trif, Head of Wellbeing and Researcher in Residence, and Andy Gough, Deputy Head Pastoral of the Prep School and Deputy Safeguard Lead at Marlborough College Malaysia.